NMFS Revises the 2016 Pollock and Pacific Cod Total Allowable Catch Amounts in the Gulf of Alaska

January 05, 2016 - 9:45 a.m.

Notice of a fishery management action.

Sustainable Fisheries

The National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) is revising the 2016 total allowable catch (TAC) amounts for pollock and Pacific cod in the Gulf of Alaska (GOA), effective 12 noon, Alaska local time, January 1, 2016, according to James W. Balsiger, Administrator, Alaska Region, NMFS.

NMFS is increasing the pollock TAC from 257,178 metric tons (mt) to 257,872 mt and decreasing the Pacific cod TAC from 75,202 mt to 71,925 mt in the GOA. This action is necessary because NMFS has determined that the current 2016 pollock and Pacific cod TACs for the GOA are incorrectly specified.  The TACs currently specified for 2016 are different than the associated TACs derived from the latest stock assessment information. 

The 2016 TACs are scheduled to be updated in late February 2016, based on the latest stock assessments.  However, the pollock and Pacific cod fisheries are likely to harvest the entire A season apportionments before the updated harvest specifications are effective.  NMFS must therefore increase the pollock and decrease the Pacific cod TACs, as well as associated seasonal apportionments for both species, prior to the updated harvest specifications.  The Steller sea lion protection measures at 50 CFR 679.20 require the seasonal apportionment of the annual TAC to reduce the potential for competition for prey species between Steller sea lions and the pollock and Pacific cod fisheries.  The seasonal apportionment is necessary to prevent the likelihood of the groundfish fisheries causing jeopardy of extinction or adverse modification of critical habitat for Steller sea lions. 

The revised 2016 harvest specification tables can be found on the NMFS website

This information bulletin only provides notice of a fishery management action.  For the purposes of complying with any requirements of this action, you are advised to see the actual text of the action in the Federal Register.

Last updated by Alaska Regional Office on June 04, 2019